Zeus in Exile: Archaeological Restitution as Politics of Memory
Working Paper #13, Summer 2000
This paper is an analysis of the current debates on the Zeus Altar,
not only in terms of its present possession and copyright, but
also as a collectively negotiated construct of memory. By investigating
the case of the Pergamon Altar, I hope to show the shortcomings
of the present literature for and against repatriation, which
often treat the archaeological monument as mere cultural goods.
A reconsideration of the Zeus Altar as embodiment of collective
memory, which is at the heart of political negotiations today,
may bring a new perspective to the definitions of cultural property,
national patrimony and historical heritage.
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